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Chief of Soviet KGB promoted to marshal

Soviet KGB chief Viktor Chebrikov was promoted to the rank of marshal Wednesday, becoming the first head of the security organization to hold the title since Stalinist days.

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The award marked Mr. Chebrikov's third promotion in five months. Western diplomats said it marked him as a powerful and rising figure in the Soviet leadership under President Konstantin Chernenko and that, in time, he might be promoted to full Politburo membership.

His elevation also underlined the growing role and influence of the KGB in the Kremlin administration, they said.